“Then Peter said to them, ‘Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, and as many as the Lord our God will call’” (Acts 2:38-39).
This was the Day of Pentecost — a day shortly after the resurrection of Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit, the third person of the Triune God, came down and indwelt people. I am sure some people heard the words and considered them almost too good to be true. “Well, maybe from time to time God found a special vessel such as Elijah or King David to fill with His Spirit, but it’s not for me. That is for just the important, select few.”
Yet on the Day of Pentecost, it is as if the Lord said, “That may have been what it was like for a season, but now it is for every person, everywhere!” The promise of God’s Holy Spirit and power is also to “all who are far off,” meaning not just within the physical proximity but those who would be found in later places and later dates. That means the promise is for you and your children!
The Lord clearly spoke through the prophet Joel: “And it shall come to pass afterward that I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions” (Joel 2:28). Does that leave anyone out? Is there anyone who is not a son, a daughter, young, or old? The Lord just leveled the playing field, essentially saying, “Whoever calls on Me, I will fill with My Holy Spirit!”
“But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me” (Acts 1:8). What an incredible promise! We are going to be a demonstration of His power and a witness to who God is.
Carter Conlon joined the pastoral staff of Times Square Church in 1994 at the invitation of the founding pastor, David Wilkerson, and was appointed Senior Pastor in 2001.